Endangered Species Act (ESA) Compliance

Marbled Murrelet and Northern Spotted Owl Habitat Mapping

Tacoma Power
As part of license implementation for the Cushman Hydroelectric Project, Meridian mapped marbled murrelet and northern spotted owl habitat on approximately 50,000 acres within the project boundary and within 1 mile of the project boundary. Based on aerial photo interpretation of over 160 stereo pairs, the GIS maps will be used to help design, site, and schedule activities that could modify habitat or cause noise disturbance, as well as contributing information needed for long-term habitat management.

Biological Assessments for Kootenai River Habitat Restoration Program

Kootenai Tribe of Idaho and BPA
Meridian prepared multiple Biological Assessments to evaluate the effects of aquatic habitat restoration at several sites along a 50-mile reach of the Kootenai River, Idaho, primarily assessing impacts to listed white sturgeon and bull trout and their critical habitat. These efforts met ESA Section 7 requirements and the USFWS approved each of the BAs. Meridian also prepared a programmatic BA covering restoration project implementation from 2013 through 2016. This approach effectively streamlined compliance for the annual instream construction projects. Meridian also prepared ESA documentation for the Tribe's terrestrial habitat restoration program.

Biological Assessment for the Lewis River Hydroelectric Projects

PacifiCorp Energy
Meridian biologists analyzed potential effects of continued operation of four major hydropower projects on listed bull trout, Chinook and chum salmon, steelhead, and 14 wildlife and plant species. We produced two BAs for formal Section 7 consultation between FERC and NMFS and USFWS that evaluated effects on ESA listed salmon, steelhead and bull trout population connectivity; habitat quantity and quality within two reservoirs and downstream river reaches; fish propagation and enhancement measures; river ramping and instream flows; and reintroduction of salmon and steelhead to over 170 miles of habitat. NMFS and USFWS issued Biological Opinions for the continued operation of these projects.

Kootenai River Native Fish Aquaculture Program

Kootenai Tribe of Idaho and BPA
The Kootenai Tribe completed a new hatchery in 2014 to produce burbot and Kootenai white sturgeon, both imperiled species. Meridian prepared the Biological Assessment addressing project effects on white sturgeon and bull trout and their designated critical habitat.

Biological Assessment of the Lyle Falls and Castile Falls Fish Passage Facilities

Bonneville Power Administration (with DJ Warren and Associates)
Meridian prepared multiple Biological Assessments to evaluate the effects of aquatic habitat restoration at several sites along a 50-mile reach of the Kootenai River, Idaho, primarily assessing impacts to listed white sturgeon and bull trout and their critical habitat. These efforts met ESA Section 7 requirements and the USFWS approved each of the BAs. Meridian also prepared a programmatic BA covering restoration project implementation from 2013 through 2016. This approach effectively streamlined compliance for the annual instream construction projects. Meridian also prepared ESA documentation for the Tribe's terrestrial habitat restoration program.

Barbee Lumber Mill Biological Assessment in Lake Washington

Lloyd and Associates, Inc.
Meridian conducted seasonal SCUBA-based assessments of fish habitat and populations near a debris dredging site in Lake Washington. We analyzed the effects of dredging on aquatic habitat quality, fish diversity, and macrophyte density and diversity. Meridian prepared a Biological Assessment addressing ESA listed Chinook salmon as part of a Section 404 permit application. The BA was approved and the project is complete.